Slowly, but surely, the pounds came. Like ants, one by one, then two by two. As a climber, extra weight is detrimental for sure. My ideal weight revolves around 185-190 pounds. At some point I reached 195 and soon, I saw 200 pound light up on the scale. While I could have blamed the batteries, I didn’t. Instead, I avoided the scale, told myself that “my weight fluctuates,” which it does and next thing I knew, I was at 220 pounds. That was November, and something had to be done.
How I got here was simple. Over the last two years, I stayed pretty active, but did greatly reduce my activity level. I stopped climbing mid-week and did very little hiking or cardio exercise. I have to admit, opening a new school was a big factor for my low energy level and lack of performance, but the honest truth is that I lacked motivation. Worse, I lacked discipline. I read somewhere that discipline is more important than motivation. Motivation comes and goes, but discipline is what keeps you going when motivation weans.
Time for a change
Ernita was out of the country, so changing eating habits was easy. My new meals wouldn’t inconvenience anyone else. What I didn’t know was where to start. With some research, I found My Fitness Pal, a website and phone app to help keep track of health.
The first thing I did with My Fitness Pal was tack my actual eating habits and caloric intake. My whole life I’ve heard that keeping track of things works. Make a budget and post it to save money is a good example. Well, after a couple weeks of tracking everything I ate, I noticed that the majority of my diet consisted of carbs. I consume very little sugar, but fruit kicked up sugar levels too. I was also surprised that I consumed between 2500 and 3200 calories per day. Something had to change.
Using the APP on my I-phone, I restructured my diet:
Daily Nutrition Goals 1400 calories
- 15% Carbohydrates
- 30% Fat
- 55% Protein
It didn’t take long before I saw some results. In 4 weeks, I lost 22 pounds. Considering that I was surrounded by Christmas candy, cakes and cookies at school everyday, I felt pretty good.
I spent Christmas break with my mother in Southern California. For various reasons, I couldn’t justify a solo climbing trip, but I did manage to walk 5 to 8 miles a days for two weeks. By the end of the break, I was down 1992 pounds. Again, for years I read about the power of walking, but now, I experienced it first hand. I’m still not at my goal of 185 pounds, but I have learned a few things and I’m on my way.